Sunday, June 30, 2024

Sew Powerful Purses #125-130 (2024)

Hello everyone! Still sewing purses of course, and here are the latest 6 completed purses. 

The fabric I used for the exterior bodies of these purses was donated to me by another Sew Powerful volunteer. It is an African fabric she got from a shop in Texas that came from Africa and then she sent it to me. I made these purses and will mail them to California and then they will be put on ship along with 1,000's more purses from other purse makers and make it's way back to Africa to Zambia. So this fabric has had quite the traveling voyage already. 

I cut the little squares that I used in the center of each flap from a fabric that I bought ages ago. These made for a nice start to sew other scraps around. I used some of the scraps I ended up with from the exterior purse fabric and added those to the flaps as well. I think these purses turned out pretty.

I made the yellow strap with some yellow fabric I had for this purse. The rest below I used webbing for the straps.

Flap up
This is the African print fabric for the body of these purses. It's a gingko design.

I added a back pocket to this purse.

back side
Another back slip pocket.

I cut the embroidered words from a tee shirt, Life is Good, to add to this purse.

back side
Back side with slip pocket. I also embroidered the webbing strap with decorative stitches. It's fun to do sometimes.

I think I might have some more of this fabric print, but I cannot find it at the moment. I must have put it somewhere else. One day I will find it and make more purses with it.

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Saturday, June 29, 2024

Sew Powerful Purses #123-124 (2024)

A couple more purses are finished. I had cut the kits out quite some time ago. I am sending this purse with cat in with a note attached to not send to the rural areas as the people in the rural areas apparently see certain animals differently and we need to be sensitive to their beliefs. So in the rural areas, cats, owls, bats and hyenas are something we shouldn't add to a purse.  I have made purses with cats and owls in the past, but this was before Sew Powerful branched out into the rural schools and they were okay to include at other the schools. I would never have made purses with bats or hyenas though as they don't appeal to me at all and I wouldn't think they would appeal to anyone else either. So just to be certain I will add a note to attach to this cat purse. The Zambia women volunteers do know not to send those animals to rural schools and will pull any out to make sure they don't go there, but I don't want to add to their work by using any of those animals in the future.

I had made another purse using this same cat print and added other scraps to that flap, but I had mailed it in when I had filled another box of purses. This one I hadn't finished. 

Scrappy purse flap using up misc. scraps.

Back added slip pocket too.

Two more done. My purse box is getting fuller, but not full enough to mail off yet. I think I have about 72 purses in that box so far and so I will finish making more until I can fill the box to the max!

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Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Sew Powerful Purses #118-122 (2024)

5 more purses finished for Sew Powerful Purse Project. I had a donated fabric that I used for the purse bodies that is a lovely colorful print that looks like it was painted. I wanted to get as many purses as I could using that print, so I made scrappy flaps and included a scrap of the print in each of the 4 scrappy flaps I made (except for one that I painted) and I added appliqué as the focal point of the flaps too. I really love how these flaps and purses turned out!

I added a purple heart appliqué to the center of the flap to give it a nice focal point on this purse and the other four purses I pieced below with added appliqué as well.

Flap flipped up to see the flap lining
Flap is up showing the lining and the front of the purse to see the exterior fabric better. Isn't the exterior fabric beautiful? Each cut piece of the that fabric shows a different part of the print.

Back of the purse
The back of the purse and a different section of the print fabric.

The Saguaro cactus is a die cut I have and this is the first time using it. We don't have any Saguaro cactus here in New Mexico where I live, but I have seen lots of these cacti in Arizona, in Phoenix and Tucson area. They are such tall fun cactus and the arms of each cactus can look so different and take on their own personality. I may need to add a little note about this cactus int he notecard that I include in the purse, so the girl who receives this will know what it is, in case she hasn't seen one in a photo before.

Flap up to show flap lining and purse front
Another section of the print reveals a different look than the other purse.

Back side of purse
Here is the back of the purse, showing yet another part of the print.

This purse has a heart appliqué in a different color than the first heart appliqué that I showed.

back side of purse
The back of the purse. I wondered if those squiggly lines on the fabric was a flaw? I saw them in a few places and they didn't make any sense in the print, so I wonder if a thread got in the way when the fabric was printed? Perhaps that is why someone donated this fabric? I used it anyhow and placed it on the back of the purse. This was the only purse that I had enough fabric to add the back slip pocket on.

This purse I added a flower appliqué with doubled stacked buttons in the center of the flower. I love that the center button fit perfectly inside the larger button, since that yellow button had the raised part around it.

Flap up to show front of purse
Front of the purse and a bit more of the lines (it gets covered by the flap)
 and another part of this print.
back of purse
Back of the purse with another section of the print.

Painted purse flap with stenciled African woman
I first painted a texture background on this flap and then added the stenciled woman on top of the fabric after the paint dried. The paint I used for the hair has a metallic iridescence to it, which you cannot see in the photo.

Flap up reveals flap lining with a different painted stenciled African woman
I also painted the lining of the flap and used a different stencil of a woman playing the drum. The front of the purse shows another portion of the fabric print.

back of purse
The back of the purse showing yet another portion of this beautiful print.

5 girls will get to enjoy the beautiful fabric in these purses. If I had seen that fabric for sale, I might have purchased the entire bolt! I am thankful I got the donation of the fabric and was was able to get 5 purses made from it.

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Monday, June 24, 2024

Turquoise String Quilt with Appliqué Bear Wearing a Scarf

I love scrappy quilts, don't you? You can sew just one color family of scraps together or combine 2 color families or 3 or just make a scrappy quilt with every color in the rainbow, plus black, white, gray, brown and more. Plus, there are so many ways to sew with scraps. This is a String Quilt that I made here, which is only one type of scrappy quilt. I also love to make free form Log Cabin/Courthouse Steps quilts (some lovingly call them Duckworth Quilts, named after a women in a Scrap Quilt Facebook Group who makes her free form log cabin style scrappy quilts similar to mine, in that she chooses one color family or two, and her last name is Duckworth). So people in the group keep referring to them as Duckworth quilts 😁. Such a nice compliment to her.

So this is a string Quilt, not a Duckworth quilt. You can set string quilts in various ways and can make the blocks square or as a rectangle, which is what I did here. While making any kind of scrappy quilt, you do use up a lot of scraps in the process, however you also end up with new scraps (pieces left from the backing, the binding and the border(s). It's just the way it goes with scrap quilts.😄.

I often like to add a large appliqué to a scrappy quilt for a bit of whimsy. Scrappy quilts can be beautiful all on their own, but sometimes it might need an appliqué, to give the quilt that finishing touch somehow. But it all depends on the colors in the quilt and the appliqué as to whether or not it will work and look good. Some scrappy quilts are so busy that an appliqué would get lost and wouldn't enhance the quilt at all.  

The bear is all flannel, which gives it a softness. The backing fabric is also flannel, so this would make a good cuddle quilt for a child as well as a wall quilt.

Closeup of applique bear
I added some buttons eyes to give this bear a bit of character. They are sewed very securely, but I wouldn't give this to a child under the age of three as those buttons could pose a choking problem if somehow a button got chewed off! 

Closeup of string quilt

Husband said that it looks like the orange border of the quilt wrapped itself into a scarf around the bear (even though the scarf is flannel and wider and the inner border is regular cotton).

Happy Scrappy quilt piecing!

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Sunday, June 23, 2024

Sew Powerful Purse #117 (2024)

Another scrappy pieced flap for this purse. Still working my way through the dozens of kits I have put together that are ready to sew. Making good progress. Finding kits that I made so long ago that I didn't even remember them 😂! 

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Saturday, June 22, 2024

Sew Powerful Purses #112-116 (2024)

A quintuplet set of purses!

Unlike me to use the fabric as is and not scrappy or appliqué on it, but the butterflies wouldn't be seen if I had used scraps and I thought it was a pretty fabric, so I left it alone, but added different buttons to each. Sometimes the fabric just wants to stay in one piece 😄!!!

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Friday, June 21, 2024

Gray String Quilt

I finished this gray string quilt and it's now in the gift shop. I had stitched most of the blocks a while ago and never put them together. I found them and laid them out to see if I had enough blocks and what pattern I wanted before stitching them into rows and putting it together. I liked this arrangement of the diamond and the other blocks surrounding the one diamond shape. I added a couple of borders and quilted it to a black polar fleece backing and then sewed the binding on. Polar fleece is a great soft backing and you really don't need any batting as the polar fleece it thick enough on its own. It is still technically a quilt as I did sew the gray strings onto a foundation material, so I do have 3 layers, which is what a quilt is: a top layer, a middle layer and a back layer. 

I think using gray prints that have bits of other colors in them gives this quilt a bit more interest. Plus the various shades of grays give it that shadow look. From a distance it does have an artsy quality to the quilt, almost like looking at a painting photographed in black and white so it looks like it is from an era before color photography.

Scrap happy stitching!

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Thursday, June 20, 2024

Kokopelli Table Runner #2

I made a second Kokopelli scrappy pieced table runner because I still had lots of the Kokopelli squares and batik scraps. The first one I made I took to the gift shop on Monday and it sold on Wednesday!!! That is the fastest anything has ever sold there, since they are closed on Monday for intake and closed on Tuesday too. Of course I think I will increase the price for the next one by a few dollars, as I sold it too cheap, but I wanted to see if it would sell at all. Now that it did sell, was it a fluke? Or would another one sell too? I guess I will find out after I make a third one. I need to have a few more of my things sell before I can bring in more stuff anyhow, so that give me time to make another one or two more.

I was planning on showing this table runner in a fiber art show at the beginning of next year in a group I belong to, but maybe I need to make a third runner? It is a great scrap buster, so I love that I am using up my batik scraps, well some of my scraps as the bag that holds my scraps doesn't look very empty, just a little less plump 😂!

I also took in a couple of the cross body purses that I make for Sew Powerful that I put a Kokopelli square in the middle and sewed scraps around it. If either of those 2 purses sell, I will donate the money received to Sew Powerful charity. I will share those purses soon here on the blog.

Happy scrappy stitching!

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